MANILA — Senator Francis Escudero was humbled by President Rodrigo Duterte naming him as his preferred successor if he pushes through with plans to step down from the presidency.
Despite this, Escudero knows there is no way a succession by the chief executive’s selection will prosper.
“Nakakataba ng puso yung paniniwala ni Pangulong Duterte subalit siya na mismo ang nagsabi na wala namang legal naparaan para mangyari ‘yon at naniniwala ako na nagpapahayag lamang siya ng kanyang frustration kaugnay sa mabagal napagtakbo ng mga nais niyang makamit at makita sa ating bansa, lalo na sa larangan ng korupsyon at kapayapaan (It’s heart warming to know President Duterte’s confidence but he himself said that there is no legal way for it to work and I believe he only expressed his frustration regarding the slow progress of his plans which he wants to achieve for our country, especially on the issues of corruption and peace and order),” he said in an interview.
Escudero said he and Duterte have not talked with each other. “Hindi pa kami nagkakausap ni Pangulong Duterte.”
President Duterte had floated anew his plans to resign following corruption issues within the government.
While similar pronouncements had surfaced in his past speeches, Foreign Affairs Secretary Alan Peter Cayetano said these should be interpreted as an expression of frustration that despite things done, there is still a mound of problems.
“I have attended lately a number of his engagement and for me, it’s an expression of frustration that despite the many many changes that have happened and the things that have been done, there are still so many problems,” he told a media interview in Pasay City.
“The President said from the start that he does not want to run, he said from the start that he’s only good for one term and if we can convert the federal Republic before that he’s okay to leave.”
Cayetano said the public should interpret his statements in its entirety.
“The problems are just enormous but you know the political will of the president has moved mountains, a lot of things are moving,” he pointed out. “Let’s pray for him, let’s not wait that he gets to a point that he does want to step down.” (PNA)